BLOCK PRINTING: ONE OF LOST TREASURES OF MARDIN
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The identity of cities is being reshaped in line with the changing and developing science, industry and communication technologies. These changes and developments being experienced over the recent years have caused a lot of treasures that have significant artistic or historical importance either to be forgotten entirely (by being transformed) or to lose their functionality and be left behind time. Mardin which is one of the oldest cities of the region it is located in is a city that welcomes a wide range of religious and ethnic components, where different groups of ethnicities live together and where culture and art intertwined together. Assyrians living in Mardin have especially been successful at architecture and architectural ornaments and also at handicrafts such as jewellery. Another traditional form of art they have been good at on the other hand is block printing. The block printing is referred to as “hetmo” by the Assyrians. The phrase “block printing” is used to refer to printing made ith an impress or figures drawn using a brush mostly on cotton fabrics. Abandoning the traditions rapidly and not attaching traditional arts the significance that they deserve play a great role in block printing which is a form of folk art from Anatolia losing its influence today. However, it is observed that the foundations of contemporary or modern arts rely and practice upon traditional arts. In this study, having discussed the art of block printing and introducing the last representative of Assyrian block printing; Miksiye Nasra Simmes Hindi, the significance of this culture in terms of traditional arts is pointed out. Field study, source person interviews and literature screening techniques are used within the scope of our methodology in this study. Assyrian art of block printing and its latest representative have been documented with the photographs of Miksiye Nasra Simmes Hindi who was the latest representative of the art of block printing which were taken back when she was alive and also with the photographs of her workshop taken after her death.